ORLANDO, Fla. (Oct. 29, 2012) – Hawker Beechcraft Corporation (HBC) today announced that Prince George-based Northern Thunderbird Air (NT-Air) has taken delivery of a new Beechcraft King Air 350 to be placed into air ambulance service. The aircraft was delivered in early September and taken to the Hawker Beechcraft Services (HBS) facility in Wichita, Kan., to be fitted with equipment to enhance air ambulance missions throughout British Columbia.
“As the newest and most modern aircraft in our fleet, the Beechcraft King Air 350 is under contract to the Province of British Columbia for dedicated air ambulance operations,” said Bill Hesse, general manager, Northern Thunderbird Air. “This King Air has the speed, state-of-the-art avionics, endurance and high altitude capability to provide first-class air ambulance service to the people of British Columbia.”
Air ambulance capabilities being installed at HBS Wichita include:
* Provisions for dual LifePort, Inc. Advanced Life Support System medical beds. Each bed is equipped with oxygen, vacuum and compressed air, as well as lighting and inverters to provide AC power for medical equipment;
* Two storage cabinets –custom designed and built to meet the NT-Air’s specifications;
* Max-Viz EVS-1500 Enhanced Vision System that will provide the aircraft with enhanced safety operating from remote, isolated fields by giving the flight crew improved visibility in ground operations, as well as in flight operations at night and in other poor visibility conditions;
* Skytrac Automatic Flight Following (AFF) delivers aircraft location to the destination hospital thereby allowing the hospital to be prepared when the aircraft arrives. In addition, Skytrac AFF provides voice and text communications between the air and ground via Bluetooth connectivity/interfacing with iPhone, Android and BlackBerry smartphones;
* Stormscope integrated into the multi-function display to complement weather radar data with lightning strike information, providing more complete information to determine the potential for turbulent weather;
* Three cabin chairs with a work table; and
* Custom interphone stations to allow the medical crew to easily communicate with the on-board flight crew.
The Beechcraft King Air 350 provides the best payload and range capability of any aircraft in its class. It can fly more than 1,500 nautical miles at a cruise speed of more than 300 kts. In addition, the King Air 350 can take off and land on unimproved fields. The pressurized cabin allows the aircraft to fly up to 35,000 feet – well over most inclimate weather and turbulence, ensuring the air ambulance patient and flight crew with a smooth, comfortable ride.
A King Air 350, along with the entire King Air family of turboprops, is on display this week at the 2012 National Business Aviation Association’s annual convention in Orlando.